Leadership

The Search for Social Entrepreneurship

The Search for Social Entrepreneurship
Brookings Institution Press

Light, P.C.
01/01/2008

Research on social entrepreneurship is finally catching up to its rapidly growing potential. In The Search for Social Entrepreneurship, Paul Light explores this surge of interest to establish the state of knowledge on this growing phenomenon and suggest directions for future research. Light begins by outlining the debate on how to define social entrepreneurship, a concept often cited and lauded but not necessarily understood. A very elemental definition would note that it involves individuals, groups, networks, or organizations seeking sustainable change via new ideas on how governments, nonprofits, and businesses can address significant social problems. That leaves plenty of gaps, however, and without adequate agreement on what the term means, we cannot measure it effectively. The unsatisfying results are apple-to-orange comparisons that make replication and further research difficult. The subsequent section examines the four main components of social entrepreneurship: ideas, opportunities, organizations, and the entrepreneurs themselves. The copious information available about each has yet to be mined for lessons on making social entrepreneurship a success. The third section draws on Light’s original survey research on 131 high-performing nonprofits, exploring how they differ across the four key components. The fourth and final section offers recommendations for future action and research in this burgeoning field.

Dueling Schemata: Dialectical Sensemaking About Gender

Dueling Schemata: Dialectical Sensemaking About Gender
Journal of Applied Behavioral Science Vol. 42, No. 3, 350-372.

Foldy, E.G.
09/01/2006

Recent scholarship has shown that, despite the broad representation of women in the workplace, gender inequities in organizations remain widespread. Because gender schema ”embedded ways of thinking about men and women” contribute to this phenomenon, addressing such mental models should be a part of gender equity initiatives. This article provides data that suggest that some individuals hold within themselves quite contradictory schemas of men and of women. It then illustrates how individuals can use these internal inconsistencies to push through superficial understandings of gender to more complex ones. By facilitating this learning process in training and other kinds of organizational events, change agents can strengthen organizational efforts to achieve gender equity.

Efforts to Improve Public Policy and Programs Through Improved "Data Practice": Experiences in Fifteen Distressed American Cities"

Efforts to Improve Public Policy and Programs Through Improved "Data Practice": Experiences in Fifteen Distressed American Cities"
Public Administration Review Vol. 66 No. 3

Weitzman, B.C., Silver, D. & Brazill, C.
01/01/2006

Philanthropies and government agencies interested in children's issues are encouraging localities to improve the process of collecting, linking, and sharing microdata and aggregated summary statistics. An implicit assumption of these efforts is that outcomes will improve as a result of the new approaches. However, there has been little systematic study of these efforts. In this article, we examine efforts to improve data practice in 15 distressed American cities. Interviews conducted in these cities revealed variation in the types of information collected, dissemination, and intended audiences. We identify significant challenges to these efforts, including adequate resources, turf battles, technical problems, access to information sources, inconsistent leadership, and absence of political will. We find that little is known about the impact of these initiatives on decision making. Assumptions that improved data practice will lead to improved policy making have not yet been realized in these cities.

The Role of Faith-Based Institutions in Providing Health Education and Promoting Equal Access to Care: A Case Study of an Initiative in the Southwest Bronx

The Role of Faith-Based Institutions in Providing Health Education and Promoting Equal Access to Care: A Case Study of an Initiative in the Southwest Bronx
Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved 2006; 17.2: 9-19.

Kaplan S.A., Calman, N.S., Golub M., Davis J.H. & Billings, J.
01/01/2006

Although many public health initiatives have been implemented through collaborations with faith-based institutions, little is known about best practices for developing such programs. Using a community-based participatory approach, this case study examines the implementation of an initiative in the Bronx, New York, that is designed to educate community members about health promotion and disease management and to mobilize church members to seek equal access to health care services. The study used qualitative methods, including the collaborative development of a logic model for the initiative, focus groups, interviews, analysis of program reports, and participant observation. The paper examines three key aspects of the initiative’s implementation: (1) the engagement of the church leadership; (2) the use of church structures as venues for education and intervention; and (3) changes in church policies. Key findings include the importance of pre-existing relationships within the community and the prominent agenda-setting role played by key pastors, and the strength of the Coalition’s dual focus on health behaviors and health disparities. Given the churches’ demonstrated ability to pull people together, to motivate and to inspire, there is great potential for faith-based interventions, and models developed through such interventions, to address health disparities.

Integrating Rigor and Relevance in Public Administration Scholarship: The Contribution of Narrative Inquiry

Integrating Rigor and Relevance in Public Administration Scholarship: The Contribution of Narrative Inquiry
Public Administration Review, Vol. 65, May/June, No.3, pp. 286.

Dodge, J., Ospina, S. & Foldy, E.G.
05/01/2005

A traditional view of scholarly quality defines rigor as the application of method and assumes an implicit connection with relevance. But as an applied field, public administration requires explicit attention to both rigor and relevance. Interpretive scholars' notions of rigor demand an explicit inclusion of relevance as an integral aspect of quality. As one form of interpretive research, narrative inquiry illuminates how this can be done. Appreciating this contribution requires a deeper knowledge of the logic of narrative inquiry, an acknowledgement of the diversity of narrative approaches, and attention to the implications for judging its quality. We use our story about community-based leadership research to develop and illustrate this argument.

It's About Time: Catching Method Up to Meaning-The Usefulness of Narrative Inquiry in Public Administration Research

It's About Time: Catching Method Up to Meaning-The Usefulness of Narrative Inquiry in Public Administration Research
Public Administration Review, Vol. 65, No. 2, pp. 143.

Ospina, S. & Dodge, J.
03/01/2005

A traditional view of scholarly quality defines rigor as the application of method and assumes an implicit connection with relevance. But as an applied field, public administration requires explicit attention to both rigor and relevance. Interpretive scholars' notions of rigor demand an explicit inclusion of relevance as an integral aspect of quality. As one form of interpretive research, narrative inquiry illuminates how this can be done. Appreciating this contribution requires a deeper knowledge of the logic of narrative inquiry, an acknowledgement of the diversity of narrative approaches, and attention to the implications for judging its quality. We use our story about community-based leadership research to develop and illustrate this argument.

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